Fall Hunting Season In New England
Buy an Orange Jacket or Duck!
By James H. Hyde
It was one of the funniest signs I'd ever seen, crudely made, but it got the point across to hunters. I was walking down a country road in Vermont, not far from pastureland on which the farmer had a herd of Holsteins. The cows were grazing about 100 feet away, but I was surprised to see that they didn't look much like cows.
Cows are lost to hunters every year. A lot of hunters just can't wait to pull the trigger, and if something moves, they do. That means that they shoot anything from squirrels to dogs to cats to cows.
As I looked closer, all of the cows were wearing billboards held together by leather straps. In big, red, quickly scrawled letters was the word "COW!" on each. It's a true story and a good lesson. Trigger-happy hunters will shoot at anything that moves.
We were standing on our front porch during shotgun season to find ourselves suddenly pelted with buckshot. We found out later that two drunken hunters had been caught by a ranger and their hunting licenses revoked.
As leaves fall to make the new layer of forest floor, it's a great time for hiking, except that if you do so in November into December in some states, you could find yourself on the wrong end of a bow, hunting rifle, shotgun or muzzle loader. Responsible hunters will always make sure that they're aiming at a deer. Others, anxious to bag anything, could shoot you if they see movement in the woods. That's because it's deer hunting season.
Make sure that if you're going hiking that you wear a hunter orange jacket and hat. Anything brown or dark can wind up with a bulls eye on it. You can pick them up at any sporting goods store, and the cost is well worth it. Hunters good or bad won't shoot at regulation orange. We obtained a long and wide, rubber, orange ribbon in which we wrap our dog whenever she goes out.
Below are links to the hunting seasons in each state. If you wander around the woods without the bright orange garb, you could very easily become a target, so don't take a chance. Either buy the jacket and hat or wait until the season is over.
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